Party leadership to meet former CM Mukul Sangma and State unit chief Pala
After suffering setbacks in Punjab and Goa, the Congress leadership has made a move to stem the rot within the party in Meghalaya.
The Meghalaya unit of the Congress has been divided into two camps since the party leadership appointed Shillong MP Vincent H. Pala as its president a month ago. The dissident camp is said to be led by former Chief Minister and Congress Legislature Party leader Mukul M. Sangma.
Senior Congress leaders are likely to meet Dr. Sangma and Mr. Pala in New Delhi by October 4 to iron out the differences between the two leaders ahead of the bypolls to three Assembly seats on October 30. The seats are Mawphlang, Mawryngkneng and Rajabala.
“I will be travelling to Delhi on Sunday for resolving the issues,” Dr. Sangma told journalists in Meghalaya capital Shillong, trashing speculations that he was set to quit the Congress and join the Trinamool Congress along with 13 Congress MLAs.
“The assumption about our leaving the party is too premature,” he said.
Differences within the Congress in Meghalaya became apparent after Dr. Sangma said he was not consulted before the party leadership made Mr. Pala the State unit president. Party insiders said the two leaders have been in a cold war for quite some time.
Apart from avoiding a function to mark Mr. Pala’s formal anointment, Dr. Sangma skipped a programme in which five former Congress leaders were re-inducted. These five were known to be his critics.
Speculations about his quitting the Congress were later triggered by his meeting with Trinamool Congress general secretary Abhishek Banerjee in Kolkata on September 21. Dr. Sangma said it was merely a “courtesy call”.
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